Postdocs in Economics and speed of energy transitions

Chalmers University

How will the economics of energy technologies shape the unfolding energy transition? And what is the potential for large-scale infrastructures such as negative emissions technologies and hydrogen to contribute to the energy transition? Two post-doc positions tackle these questions as part of a broader research agenda on understanding the feasibility of climate action. Each post-doc will focus on analyzing these questions through a combination of empirical research, statistical analysis, and computational experiments. The researcher will be part of a research group with wide international collaboration.

Information about the division and the research

The Department of Space, Earth and Environment contains five divisions, with research and education spanning from global challenges related to sustainability and energy supply to astronomy and space sciences. The department is host to two major infrastructures, Onsala Space Observatory and Chalmers Power Central, and consist of about 250 employees.

The division of Physical Resource Theory conducts research and provides education on solutions to major environmental challenges such as global warming and sustainable land use. Our research is challenge-driven and interdisciplinary building on both technical and social sciences and using a range of quantitative and qualitative methods. The division has around 50 staff members, faculty and PhD-students with diverse expertise, including engineers, natural and social scientists.

Technologies needed to decarbonize the electricity system are already commercially available. Yet while we know how to solve climate change in mathematical models, it’s an open question whether this can be done in the real world given the socio-political and technological constraints in different countries and regions. The POLET group on the political economy of energy transitions seeks to answer this question by exploring the actors and contexts of energy transitions and combining knowledge on the socio-technical, political and techno-economic mechanisms that shape energy transitions.

Currently, we are recruiting two Post-Doctoral positions

  1. One researcher will examine how the economics of energy technologies shape their growth. In particular, how is solar and wind growth shaped by investment, profitability, and policy support in different countries.
  2. A second researcher will examine potential growth paths for large technical infrastructures to support the low-carbon transitions. In particular, how do technological characteristics shape the growth phases of large technologies?

Both positions are part of an ERC Starting Grant project (MANIFEST) which focuses on cross-national differences in feasibility of energy transitions as well as on its temporal dimension and therefore involves comparative and longitudinal analysis. They also contribute to the MISTRA Electrification which works on understanding the non-technical feasibility constraints to rapid electrification and decarbonization in Northern Europe.

Major responsibilities

One candidate will explore how the economics of energy technologies shape their growth. A second candidate will examine potential growth paths for large technical infrastructures to support the low-carbon transitions.

Around 20% of the position includes teaching in relevant courses.


To qualify for the position of postdoc, you must hold a doctoral degree in economics, environmental science, sustainability, or related fields of natural and social science with a specialization in energy systems analysis, energy modelling, or energy transitions at the graduate level is mandatory. Proven experience with data analysis and programming (e.g. python or R) and analysis (including statistics and climate scenarios) is also a must. Experience of writing in English with a strong motivation and commitment to scientific inquiry. The PhD should be awarded no more than three years prior to the application deadline.

Contract terms

Each postdoc position is a full-time temporary employment for two years. The expected starting date is August 2022.

We offer

Chalmers offers a cultivating and inspiring working environment in the coastal city of Gothenburg.
Read more about working at Chalmers and our benefits for employees.

Chalmers aims to actively improve our gender balance. We work broadly with equality projects, for example the GENIE Initiative on gender equality for excellence. Equality and diversity are substantial foundations in all activities at Chalmers.

Application procedure

The application should be marked with Ref 20220176 and written in English. The application should be sent electronically and be attached as pdf-files, as below:

CV: (Please name the document as: CV, Surname, Ref. number) including:

  • CV, include complete list of publications
  • Previous teaching and pedagogical experiences
  • Two-three references that we can contact, incuding contact information.

Personal letter: (Please name the document as: Personal letter, Family name, Ref. number)
1-3 pages where you:

  • Introduce yourself
  • Describe your previous research fields and main research results
  • Describe your future goals and future research focus

Other documents:

  • A brief research proposal related to the call, 2-4 pages (optional).
  • A writing sample (preferably PhD thesis and articles)
  • Attested copies of completed education, grades and other certificates.

Please use the button at the foot of the page to reach the application form. The files may be compressed (zipped).

Application deadline: May 6th 2022. The position will remain open until filled.

For questions, please contact:
Associate Professor Jessica Jewell
Phone: +46 31 7726106

*** Chalmers declines to consider all offers of further announcement publishing or other types of support for the recruiting process in connection with this position. ***

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